Suspend Your Disbelief

Posts Tagged ‘horror’

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The Countess, by Rebecca Johns

Erzsebet Bathory gained immortal fame as one of the first female serial killers; known as the “Bloody Countess,” she was accused of brutally torturing and murdering over six-hundred young women. But was she really an unrepentant, psychopathic murderer—or simply a political obstacle to the king? Was she really bathing in the blood of her victims, or was she herself the victim of a witch hunt? Such questions haunt the pages of The Countess (Crown, 2010), Rebecca Johns’s lively historical novel, which reconstructs the complexity of this 17th century scandal and brings alive the woman behind the myth.


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I have an MFA in Fiction and a Master's in Vampire Studies

How do you know when vampire lit has reached critical mass? When it gets an academic conference. Vampire literature is now receiving some scholarly attention with a conference at the University of Hertfordshire in the UK. Despite the smirk factor, the conference—”Open Graves, Open Minds: Vampires and the Undead in Modern Culture”— has some serious intellectual heft: The aim of the conference is to relate the undead in literature, art, and other media to questions concerning gender, technology, consumption, and social change. […] The irony of creatures with no reflection becoming such a pervasive reflection of modern culture pleases in […]


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scary, scarier, scariest

Happy Halloween! If you’re looking for creepy literature or inspiration on All Hallow’s Eve, here are some recommendations (and warnings): – The Baltimore Museum of Art is currently featuring an exhibit of paintings — some by renowned artists like Gauguin and Matisse — inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s stories. This is only one event in Nevermore, Baltimore’s year-long celebration of Poe throughout 2009 (in January, Poe would have turned 200). Tonight at the Strand Theatre (1823 N. Charles Street), see David Keltz read/perform as Poe, and afterwards, grab a pint at the Annabel Lee Tavern. For a full list of […]


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The Glister, by John Burnside

What is The Glister? To my dismay as a reviewer but my delight as a reader, John Burnside’s seventh novel defies encapsulation. The title itself suggests the book’s strangeness: the word, a synonym of “glitter,” seems composed of equal parts “glisten” and “blister.” In the way it compounds beauty and ugliness, it is a microcosm of the book as a whole. The Glister is neither a straightforward horror story nor an allegory à la Animal Farm, though at times it masquerades as both.



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